Grab a front row seat from the comfort of your home this Saturday as Livingstone College celebrates women in history with a virtual program.
The Livingstone College Katharine W. Osborne Women in History Program will begin at 11:30 a.m. via Zoom on April 10 featuring author M.J. Simms-Maddox, Ph.D., as the guest speaker.
Simms-Maddox is an independent author and the publisher of the Priscilla Series. A South Carolina native, she grew up in the Snowbelt of Western New York and resides in North Carolina. She earned her doctorate degree in political science from The Ohio State University; has served as a legislative aide in the Ohio Senate; operated a public relations agency; and is a retired tenured professor in political science for thirty-odd years at Florida A&M University, Livingstone College, Rowan Cabarrus Community College and Wilberforce University.
Simms-Maddox found her passion for writing fiction later in life and has written mostly mysteries and thrillers since 1999. Her debut as a fiction writer was “Priscilla Engaging in the Game of Politics,” for which the author’s background, education and early life experiences form the foundation for the fictitious Priscilla.
Called “MJ” by fans and close friends, the author is affiliated with the African Literature Association, the American Association of University Women, the Chanticleer Authors’ Conference, the North Carolina Writers’ Network and the Women’s National Book Association.
Also on the program will be Mrs. Kim Sheeks, also known as “The Hat Lady.” A retired educator and storyteller, Sheeks will share humorous stories about hats – and she has lots of them.
Deborah Johnson, United Negro College Fund (UNCF) director at Livingstone College and program coordinator for the luncheon, is encouraging all women to adorn their hats on Zoom as the annual hat contest will be taking place.
Rosalind Mitchell of Livingstone College will serve as mistress of ceremony for the program, of which Food Lion is a corporate sponsor.
The Women in History Brunch started in 2000. Katharine W. Osborne, former educator, writer, philanthropist and donor, sponsored a writer’s symposium at Catawba College and wanted to do something similar at Livingstone College. The program was sponsored by Osborne until her death.
“Though it was designed to expose students at Livingstone College to African-American writers, I think it did much more,” Johnson said. “It exposed our community as well to the various literary genres written by African-American women.”
“The Women in History Program provides us the opportunity to reflect on the accomplishments of women and how far we have come,” Johnson said. “The struggle was real as women fought to demonstrate that we, too, deserved all the rights and responsibilities of citizenship. And the struggle continues. Join us as we continue the legacy of women writers with our author, Dr. M. J. Simms-Maddox.”
How to join?
To join the program at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, April 10, click on the following Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/91567441234. The meeting ID number is 915 6744 1234.
All proceeds from the luncheon benefits UNCF. To donate: Mail a check or money order to Deborah Johnson, UNCF Livingstone College, 701 W. Monroe St., Salisbury, NC 28144. Or visit our website at www.livingstone.edu, click on the green give button at the right top corner, under the designation tab, click 2021 Virtual Women in History.